There’s no question about it- your business must be online. You’re not obligated to use the internet for personal reasons. Some people love to spend their spare time online, and others don’t. Your business, however, does need to be on the web -at least, if you want people to find out about it. How large or complicated you want to make it is up to you, but it’s essential that your customers and prospects can look you up online. Whereas people once used phone books to find out who was offering what services, hardly anyone does this anymore. They go online and the more they find about you online the more likely they will be to buy from you or hire you!
Start building an email list with your current customers. This is not hard to do it all. All you have to do is ask them to sign up for your list when they are in your store. You can even take the addresses in through your cash register if you are running a retail establishment. After collecting the addresses, you can start sending out the emails right away. So if you’re having a sale, or if there is something relevant to share, send them one. Otherwise, don’t send it every day. Many people will actually forward your e-mails to other people. When they do this, this can become very viral in nature. Make sure that you tell people that you have a website.
Business cards and letterheads, for example, should be made with your website address printed on them. If you have a business that provides people with printed receipts, your URL should be on these. If your business is a brick and mortar one, your URL should be in several highly visible locations for everyone to see. Creating an online presence is the first stage, but there’s more to it than that. You also want to make sure everyone is aware of it. There are many ways to do this once you put your mind to it.
List your business in niche centric directories. You have a product to sell? Do you cater to a particular niche audience? Some directories will cater to certain audiences. Depending upon your particular niche, only list your product or service in the directory that focuses on your niche. You need to list your product or service in only a niche related to what you’re selling. If you do more than that, it might look like you are spamming those directories.
Putting yourself in every directory that relates to your products or services is still what you need to do. You can use directories you already know about, and then search for others as well. If you want your business to have a viable web presence, you can use many different techniques. Be on the lookout for all the methods you can implement. Click here for an example of a business that has successfully managed and groomed their online presence. Any business today that isn’t online is at a distinct disadvantage. If you don’t have a presence on the internet your business will dwindle away to nothing. The internet is now the primary way to seek information. So do whatever it takes to get your business visible on the internet!
It’s natural to assume WordPress is only for blogs and nothing else. Well, it’s possible to use to WordPress not only for your blog, but also your website. WordPress, as you may or may know, is what is called a Content Management System (CMS) which offers great flexibility with applications, etc. It can be customized in many different ways thanks to the many plugins that exist, so you can use them to make your site have many functions. Here are some of the very best plugins you may want to use for IM.
ShareThis makes it easy for anybody to share your various pages and posts with the different social bookmarking sites. What it does is at the end of your pages, or posts, it will place a link box. When site visitors hover over it or click on it they are provided with a customizable list of different social networking and bookmarking sites that they can submit your site to. This allows them to share your site and business on sites like Digg, Reddit, Facebook and even chatting platforms like AOL Instant Messenger. Then they’ll be able to tell others about whatever they like about your website.
A standard plugin for SEO is the All in One SEO Pack, and it’s highly recommended. Basically it helps your blog be properly configured for ‘on page’ SEO factors so you don’t have to mess with it. So anytime you update your site, you’ll tell it what you’re doing and it updates all the appropriate on page SEO information. It will help you avoid duplicate content penalties by the search engines.
You can just specify certain pages for ‘noindex’ and you’ll be fine. Precise optimization of your website for the search engines is important and will only help you to succeed in business.
You can add a touch of personalization to your site with the WP Greet Box Plug-in. If people come from certain websites, that you specify, they’ll hear your personal greeting message. You’ll configure it to say something like, “Welcome Twitter user!”, if they come to your site from Twitter. You can customize these messages however you like. It will encourage your visitors to feel welcomed and appreciated for visiting. Hopefully it will encourage your visitors to bookmark your site on your behalf. Plugins add tremendous flexibility to an already versatile CMS platform which is what WordPress is. Anyone can use it because there is absolutely no charge at all for any of it. So you can do whatever you want and customize it however you want, it will always be free to do. From here you can customize it however you like with themes, plug-ins and tweaks to your code. It’s great for beginners because there’s no need for previous experience, or programming skills, or web design skills, etc.
Looking out to hire a web designer that’s worth it? It would behoove you to get organized and knowledgeable rather than jumping in with both feet. So we will cover a few very important points you should understand if you are in need of this kind of service.
It is super important that you are very clear about the vision you have for your site. There are so many possibilities, and of course we do not know what you want to do. So obviously a designer cannot proceed very efficiently if they do not understand what you want from them. Bear in mind the most important people who need to like the site are those for whom it is intended. This is just the basics of putting together a site that is appropriate and targeted to your particular niche audience. The final design and product has to incorporate many aspects of both you and what your niche market needs to see.
Naturally this includes the question of knowing who your market is and what they want. Maybe you have already done some branding in the past, and if so then you should include that in your new site. All of this information will help you pass on the right instructions to your web designer. When it comes to the marketing aspect, we strongly recommend you do not turn to the designer for things like search engine optimization, for example.
You will see what any web designer specializes in at their website, and so you can just talk about that but do be careful of what you pay for. If you don’t take care of this before you hire your web designer, you’ll end up having a site that has no off-page or on-page SEO. If the designer has been around for a while, then no doubt he or she knows good SEO people you can check out. One small business owner went through several web designers (and a lot of money) before she found one to give here the online presence that she wanted which can be seen here. While you are at this early stage of things, this is a good time to think about what you can afford in terms of SEO backlinking outsourcing.
If you decide to skip over certain steps, or prepare inadequately, then you will probably miss critically important aspects that you may regret. It only follows that a person who loves their work will do a better job and be more knowledge about it. If they don’t love their job and are only doing it for the sake of the money, then it’s no use hiring them. Feel free to pick the brains of the person, and those who are passionate will not mind talking about the subject. Those who are in a hurry to get your deposit and move on will not be so willing to spend time on the front-end with you.
Hopefully you will have a long lasting and positive business relationship with the web designer you choose to hire. Remember that if you do not want to hire that person at some point in the future, then you will be back to square one.